Be Kind to Yourself

Last Wednesday was one of those days where I could taste the promise of Spring. The soft streaming of snow melting, birds alive and mobile, and sun beaming through the East windows. So maybe I was intoxicated by the atmosphere, or it was a deep feeling inside, but I just felt the need to go outside and sprint. I went for 15 seconds, and then rested. Then I did it again. It felt remarkable to have the refreshing air streaming by my ears, as if I were outracing it. I felt good.

But that’s how it is sometimes. It feels really good while I am doing it, and then I pay later. My head starts to feel a little foggy and painful. I recognize that fear has a lot to do with this, but then the logic comes in. Should I have done that? Did I hurt myself? It’s been 2 and a half years, why am I still having trouble? What’s wrong with me?

A remarkable friend of mine is nearly two years free of the Stage IV melanoma that almost killed her. She healed herself through several natural means, some of which were her diet and juicing. On this Wednesday at 2:30 PM, she messaged me saying that she had not yet made her juice for the day, and asked if I ever just wanted to give up. If I ever pity myself for what I have gone through—I related. She felt fatigued by the steps she has to take in order to maintain her health and was in that all-too-familiar state of “why me?”

A year ago, this would all have sent me into a downward spiral of self-pity and self-loathing. I would turn to my body and damn it for its dysfunction and pain. However, luckily I have grown some, and I passed a message to myself and my friend that I believe we could all use to hear every now and again:

Give yourself a break.

Yes, like you do when someone says something hurtful or arrives late, you can do this for yourself. Give yourself a break for not making the money you want to just yet, for not being in the utmost health, for making a mistake. For being angry, sad, or in pain. We are not perfect beings, and we are learning with each step we take—whether it is forward or backward is no matter.

The body responds best in a state of love. So send some good feelings to your imperfections. Laugh in the face of danger, so to speak.

I am so grateful for the little things like reading and walking and laughing—things that I was not able to do for some time—but I am not settling. I want to go out and run with reckless abandon. I am reaching perfect health.

But in the meantime, I love you brain. You have given me perception and laughter, and I thank you endlessly.

Be easy with yourself and find that it all flows once the tension is released. You are doing the best you can in each moment. And if today is a day for kombucha instead of juice, so be it.

Always.

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